Review: The Summer of ’84

**This post is not sponsored. I paid to attend a cast/crew screening at the Rio Theatre.**

The Summer of ’84 follows four 15-year-old boys on their summer in the suburbs. Their small town in Oregon has been rocked by the “Cape May Strangler” that has murdered over a dozen boys in neighbouring towns. The neighbourhood conspiracy theorist, Davey, starts to suspect that his police officer neighbour is the killer. The boys begin to stalk him, trialing him through town, raid his garbage and looking for clues without him or their parents noticing. While the serial killer story is plastered everywhere the boys still have the innocents of suburban life where they feel like nothing bad will ever really happen to them. Doors are left unlocked and children are left at home.

I went into this movie expecting a campy horror movie. It was more of a slow thriller. The police officer, played by Rich Sommer, was perfectly cast as the is he or isn’t he a┬áserial killer. He was equally bumbling dopey nice guy with just a dash of subtle creepiness. The movie did feel like it was dragging on a bit but made up for it in the last twenty minutes. I think the writers got a bit lazy with the role of Nikki, the stereotypical babysitter crush. It was a bit unbelievable that a 17-year-old girl suddenly wants to hang out with her nerdy neighbour that she used to babysit. That aside I liked the movie. It made me jump more times than I was expecting. My favourite part was watching the teens “Google 80’s style” by grabbing an encyclopedia when needing to research. Expecting to see Stranger Things or IT when watching this movie is setting it up for failure. The only similarities between those movies and this are being set in the 80’s and the boy friendships. This movie is more like a Hardy’s boy mystery with a dark twist. There has not been a sequel announced yet but I would love to see where the characters are at in the Summer of ’94.

 

This movie is currently available on VOD and can be purchased here.

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